December 9, 2019

Festive Fun Day with Rachel & Kristin

Rachel, Kristin and I had our first ever Festive Fun Day last year, where we get together to spend a day checking out some of the festive things going on in New York City. (I didn’t write about it, but Rachel did!) We were so excited to plot out a brand new itinerary for this year, and luckily, this year’s Festive Fun Day was just as fun – and definitely cemented it as one of our favorite annual friendship traditions. 

We changed things up this year and decided to spend most of our time exploring downtown. We began by meeting up at South Street Seaport to see their holiday tree, before we popped into a new-to-us location for McNally Jackson. It’s my new favorite location, as the interiors and bookshelves are organized in an inviting way, there’s a cozy café (and a couple of places to curl up in) and it has plenty of natural lighting. Unsurprisingly, we all walked away with something brand new in tow (though my purchase wasn’t a book)!

We had made a reservation for brunch at Industry Kitchen (and thanks to Kristin, we arrived right on time). Their restaurant had plenty of holiday décor, from the fully decorated trees in the lobby to the Nutcracker soldiers standing at attention by the doors. We all had a hard time deciding on what to eat because there were so many yummy-sounding things on the menu! Happily, all our choices (Rachel’s lobster omelet, Kristin’s sriracha omelet, my Industry Benedict and our shared Pop Candy Land pizza for dessert) was delicious. I plan to go back there again, and I’m sure that the others do too!

After eating all that amazing food, we ended up walking around a bit! We visited Pier 17 to see the Winterland Arch (Rachel found out about that one) and were treated to surprises in the form of a lovely view of the Brooklyn Bridge and two Jason Naylor/Surface of Beauty mural collaborations. We wandered towards the Strasbourg-Alsace Christmas Market (at Bowling Green Park), which is a cute little version of an authentic French Christmas market, and also stopped by Milk Bar to buy their seasonal offering (peppermint pretzel snaps, and they are delicious and well worth trying). We then popped over to see the NYSE Christmas Tree on Wall Street (and were surprised yet again because the Fearless Girl statue was there) and Zucotti Park, which had festive décor and lights bringing some holiday cheer to downtown.

We ended up going by the Oculus and were so thrilled to see that it was also decked out for the holidays! There was also a little holiday market in the center, and we walked through it a bit and just admired all the decorations that had been set up. From there, we used the connecting underground passageway to get over to Brookfield Place to see their holiday decorations and to visit the Light Up Luminaries installation (though they were running the light show, which was a little disappointing though it just means we need to return on a different day).

If you know us well, you know we all love dessert and are constantly indulging our sweet tooths together! Our last stop of the day was an old favorite – Stax Ice Cream. We dropped by to try their Holiday Unicorn ice cream cake, which is made with vanilla ice cream and peppermint Oreo bark, and it was (as expected) delicious. I’m a big fan of their ice cream and their ice cream cakes, and I think we made the right call in ending this year’s Festive Fun Day this way!

I’m so glad we had the chance to do Festive Fun Day again this year, and that we changed up our itinerary to explore a different part of Manhattan. Looking back on all the things we did (and our photos) certainly makes my heart happy, and I already cannot wait to find out what next year’s Festive Fun Day is going to bring!


  1. That is an EXTREMELY packed and festive day, I love it!! It sounds like the most fun, I love all of the adventures that y'all go on together around your city :)

  2. This was such a fun day! I'm really loving our yearly tradition and I would love to go back to McNally and Industry Kitchen!


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